Ely Cathedral has a long history, which dates back to the Saxon period. Go through the article and explore some interesting and fun facts about Ely Cathedral.

Ely Cathedral Facts

Ely Cathedral is situated in Cambridgeshire city of England. Though started as a monastery, in 673 AD, the monastic church became a cathedral in the 12th century. The structure has an amalgamation of various styles - the ancient Norman/Romanesque style of decoration, which has beautifully paved way to the early English and Gothic styles, with a touch of the Victorian fashion. The cathedral has also been featured in a couple of movies and books. Read on further to explore some more interesting and fun facts about Ely cathedral.
Ely Cathedral England
Interesting & Fun Facts About Ely Cathedral 
  • The complete name of Ely Cathedral is "The Cathedral Church of the Holy and Undivided Trinity of Ely".
  • Ely Cathedral is the primary church of Diocese of Ely, in Cambridgeshire city of England. It is also the seat of the Anglican Bishop of Ely.
  • Locally, Ely Cathedral is known as the "Ship of the Fens", because of its prominent shape that towers above the surrounding flat and watery landscape.
  • Saint Etheldreda founded Ely Cathedral in AD 673. The cathedral began as a monastery at that time.
  • 'Ovin's stone', at the base of an 8th century cross - visible inside the cathedral, is the only surviving structure in the cathedral from the early Saxon period.
  • The present cathedral dates back to 1083, when it was started by Abbot Simeon, under William I.
  • Abbot Richard, Simeon's successor, continued building Ely Cathedral till the beginning of the 12th century. 
  • The design of the Octagon in the cathedral was given by Alan of Walsingham, when it was rebuilt.
  • The main transepts, crossing the nave below a central tower, are the oldest existing part of the rebuilt cathedral.
  • The total length of the Ely Cathedral is 537 feet, with the nave over 75 m long, the longest nave in Britain.
  • The west tower of the cathedral is built in the Romanesque style and is 66m high. The tower was built between 1174 and 1197.
  • The 'Lantern Tower' was constructed during the 1300s and replaced the old central tower. 'The Lantern' is 23 m in width and is 52 m in height. It is 43 m when measured from the floor to central roof.
  • Ely Cathedral is planned in the shape of a cruciform or cross-shaped, with the altar being at the east end.
  • The cathedral has been built from stone quarried from Barnack in Northamptonshire, with decorations in Purbeck Marble and local clunch.
  • Ely has a cathedral choir which gained international attention because of its association with The Choirboys. Two of its members, Patrick Aspbury and CJ Porter-Thaw, are choristers at the cathedral.
  • The cathedral features significantly on the cover of Pink Floyd's 1994 album 'The Division Bell'. It also features in a number of John Rutter's choral albums.
  • Ely Cathedral has been directly referred to in 'Tom's Midnight Garden', a children's book by Philippa Pearce. A movie with the same title was released in 1999.
  • The movie 'Elizabeth: The Golden Age' was filmed at Ely Cathedral. In August 2007, filming for 'The Other Boleyn Girl' also took place at the cathedral.
  • Parts of the novel 'Floodland', written by Marcus Sedgwick, have been written with the cathedral as the background.

Ely Cathedral England  
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